Mobile wallets are not easy, a statement proved true better by no business than Clinkle. After 17 month of jokes, 30 million in funding raised, a great staff exodus and then more mean-spirited humor, it almost seemed as though the impossible had happened: Clinkle launched its mobile wallet, according to Tech Crunch.
A few hours later, Tech Crunch had to amend the report about Clinkle launching with the following.
“A source familiar with Clinkle’s plans said the company didn’t intend to ‘launch’ today but wanted to have its website up as it starts rolling out to schools. The company is still modifying the copy in hopes of better explaining how it works.”
The how it works of Clinkle isn’t too hard–users with the mobile wallet are encouraged to use a pre-loaded Visa to make purchases. On every seventh purchase, users get a “reward” like a free coffee or ice cream. The user can keep the reward, “spin” it”Press Your Luck” style to see if they can turn it into a refund of their last purchase, or send it to another user. However, if users choose to gift the reward, the recipients must first spend on their Pre-paid Clinkle Visa before being able to access the gift.
There may or may not be fees associated with the wallet–Clinke definitely does not charge fees from moving funds directly from a checking account, but if the money movement involves a credit or debit card the fee situation gets murky.
Clinkle also has a P2P money transfer service, though its functionality has since been usurped by Square and PayPal, among others.